Sceranková, Pavla / Research
Thonet wooden chair, four preserve jars with bamboo stoppers
purchased 2018 with the support of the Czech Ministry of Culture
This piece again reflects Sceranková’s unique means of expression. An everyday item – this time a chair – is re-contextualized as a levitating object. The static principle of the preserve jars, representing preservation and thus stabilization, contrasts with the unanchored levitation, the de-materialized transparency of the water in which the chair stands inside the jars. This physical abnormality generates tension, which also encodes the challenging topic of humans’ trust in their sensory perception of the world. While we are enchanted by the vision of a chair levitating in water, we are in fact viewing an optical illusion which masks the real structural solution that anchors the chair in place and thus prevents us from perceiving the truth. In the most general sense of the word, the object mediates physical relativism and evokes questions regarding the truthfulness of the material world, which can also be interpreted as a nexus of energies. The image of the chair as a symbol of stability and the direct connection with the ground is thus subverted in this context, and is shifted to the level of absurdity – which is nevertheless also the level of truth.